03 December 2019

Clinical pathologist to strengthen teaching and research in molecular pathology at BRIC

November 1st 2019, MD PhD Eric Santoni-Rugiu joined BRIC. Eric will use his strong expertise in pathology to support BRIC researchers and the teaching of pathology courses at BRIC.

"Recruitment of Eric will significantly strengthen our expertise in pathology to the benefit of both the teaching and the research performed at BRIC/Finsen. The aim is for Eric to establish collaborations with many groups at BRIC/Finsen and further enhance ongoing research projects with his clinical network and broad expertise in pathology." - says Anders Lund, Director of BRIC

Clinical expertise in pathology meets basic research at BRIC

​​​​​​Eric is a Senior Consultant at the Department of Pathology at Rigshospitalet and he will work to facilitate interactions between the clinic and the research groups at BRIC/Finsen.
The Department of Pathology serves the clinical departments at Rigshospitalet and other hospitals in the Copenhagen region with histological, cytological, and molecular diagnostics and assists on regular basis other Danish and Scandinavian departments with consultations/second opinions for complex diagnostic cases.  Eric’s current clinical activity primarily concerns neoplastic and non-neoplastic thoracic (pulmonary, mediastinal, cardiovascular) diseases. His scientific focus, in collaboration with Rigshospitalet’s thoracic surgeons and oncologists, is on diagnostic and predictive biomarkers for thoracic malignancies, including molecular pathways implicated in response and resistance of these cancers to targeted therapies. Eric’s clinical expertise and research has also benefitted from several years of collaboration with the Oncology Phase I Unit at Rigshospitalet, which provides novel therapeutic options and protocols to patients with all types of cancer who have exhausted standard treatment options.

Eric Santoni-RugiuMy clinicopathological background and ties may provide the opportunity for fruitful scientific collaborations between researchers at BRIC/Finsen and clinicians/pathologists at Rigshospitalet, thereby bridging basic and clinical research together. In turn, this opens up new possibilities for exploiting the data generated by BRIC/Finsen’s scientists in the clinic and for complementing the teaching of pathology with both morphology-based and molecular aspects, in line with the fact that molecular pathology has become integral part of clinical diagnostics.” Says Eric Santoni-Rugiu, Clinical pathologist expert at BRIC

To strengthen the connection between BRIC and the clinic, Eric will work 50% in the clinic and 50% at BRIC in 2020, and 80% at BRIC and 20% in the clinic from 2021. Besides teaching courses on pathology, he will spend his time supporting research groups at BRIC, analyzing diseased tissue to favor the progress of basic and translational disease research performed on animal models and human tissue samples. His analytical expertise in pathology will also support BRIC’s histology core facility.

The recruitment of Eric is a way to bring the pathological knowhow up to expert level within BRIC, and this will benefit both teaching and research.

”With Eric joining the team of BRIC teachers, we can maintain a high professional standard of BRIC’s pathology courses on the MD, dentist and molecular biomedicine educations at our faculty. Eric’s expertise is invaluable for our collegial peer-mentoring and will help us ensure that the continuous development of course activities is aligned with current clinical practice.” –says Marie Kveiborg, Group Leader and Head of Education at BRIC.

Future opportunities

Strengthening the bond between basic research and the clinic will greatly benefit sharing of scientific expertise and support the translational aspects of biomedical research projects. The hope is that Eric’s ties to the clinic will also facilitate the access to patient samples and clinical information for research groups at BRIC, improving the translational research progress and enhancing development of effective treatments.